You may have heard of Ginkgo biloba, but wondered what it is and what its primary or most important benefits are. Ginkgo biloba is most renowned for its anti-aging properties. This supplement is a type of functional medicine, because instead of treating symptoms, it addresses causes of illnesses and acts as a preventative measure.
Ginkgo biloba is a wild native tree that grows in China, as well as a cultivated tree in many parts of the world. Its leaves have been a known medicinal supplement, initially for treating asthma, since as early as 2800 B.C. in China. Gingko biloba became popular in the late 17th century in Europe. Today, Gingko biloba ranks as one of the top sellers for herbal medicines in Europe and America.
Out of its 40 or more active substances, Ginkgo biloba has two essential ones that work in unison as an anti-aging and functional medicine: flavonoids and terpenoids. Flavonoids are antioxidants that protect the body from damage particularly in the nerves, the heart muscle and blood vessels, and the retina. Terpenoids primarily work on dilating blood vessels and reducing formation of sticky platelets, which in turn improves circulation.
The primary and most significant benefits of Gingko biloba are as follows:
- Anti-aging. Ginkgo biloba improves memory and shows promise as treatment for dementia and Alzheimer’s by increasing blood flow to the brain and preventing nerve damage.
- Reduces vertigo.
- Prevents tinnitus or ringing in the ears.
- Reduces sticky platelet activity, which can lead to cardiovascular disease, brain damage, and other immune and inflammatory diseases.
- Reduces vision problems, such as improving glaucoma and lessening macular degeneration.
- Provides functional medicine benefits, such as improving coordination, strength and energy levels, mental performance, and mood enhancement.
Since Gingko biloba has potential side effects for some people, due to certain conditions, remember to always consult with your healthcare professional before using this or any nutritional or medicinal supplements.